Our March Featured Skater is non-other than Loud N Clear. She has skills you can’t even imagine. It would surprise you to know that Loud N Clear is the oldest of our members. She is as spry as a 21-year-old and will still teach you a lesson or 2. Congratulations, you have earned it! Photo: Courtesy of Chris Robart

Derby Name: Loud N Clear

Number:  444

Team: 

Presently, Sisters of Anarchy, but I have also played with the Vineyard Vixens, and the All Star Travel Team Greenbelt Riot.

 Where do you work? 

I  work for the District School Board of Niagara.  I’m an Educational Assistant.

What are your hobbies outside of derby?  Running

How do your outside hobbies/skills affect your derby career?  Running improves my derby, and derby improves my running.

What is the story behind your derby name? 

When I started my fresh meat training I asked my friends and family to help me pick and name.  There were some really great suggestions.  I really wanted Rouge Runner, but it was taken.  I chose Loud N Clear because my last name is pronounced Loud N’.  Plus, when I retire from playing derby I plan on refereeing and Loud N Clear is also an awesome referee name.

Why roller derby?   

I spent many years going to the gym to work out and started to get bored, so I decided to run half marathons. Then I got bored with running and found derby.  Derby is NOT  boring.  It is the most exciting team sport I’ve ever played.  When I heard there was roller derby right here in Niagara I knew it was my next challenge right away.

What would you be doing right now if you weren’t involved with derby? 

Really?  Once you are involved with derby you won’t want to play any other sport.  I will always want to be involved with derby.  Whether I’m playing, refereeing, or volunteering. 

What’s your favourite part of the derby experience?  

Learning and playing this sport with a bunch of cool, supportive ladies of course.  I also love that Niagara Roller Girls volunteer and give back to the community.  Niagara Roller Girls is a not-for-profit league, run by the league.  Every member is on a committee of their choice.  I chose to be part of the Community Service Committee.  We volunteered to wrap Christmas presents at the Pen Centre for Hospice Niagara.  The league chooses groups in the local community that are in need of funding. We have a 50/50 draw at each bout and half the proceeds go to a chosen charity.   Some of the groups who have been part of our outreach work are Big Brothers and Big Sisters, RAFT, Red Roof Retreat, several groups that support animals, and community clean up.  I have taken on the roll of organizing blood donation events.

What position do you play?  Jammer.  I love to wear the star.

How do you hone your derby skills? 

Practice, practice, practice.  The more time you can spend on your skates the better you become.  I give it my all when I’m at practice, and push myself to improve skills.  I watch derby skill videos and attempt the skills until I feel confident.  It’s a challenge.  You may fall down several times while trying,  but that just means that you are pushing yourself past your limit.  That is how you grow.   You can not be afraid of falling down.  You learn how to fall in your freshmeat training and better get used to it because when you are on the track, you are going to get hit! 

What’s your favourite pre-game meal or snack? 

I have a big breakfast and snack all day.  I can’t eat dinner before I play.  My stomach is always in a state of nervous excitement before a bout.  I enjoy eating at the after party.

Who is your Biggest Fan(s)? 

I love when my friends come to watch me play.   I have to say my biggest fan is definitely my buddy Jillian.  She has come to watch me play 90% of my games.  When I am playing and see her in the crowd, it brings the biggest smile to my face.

Who is your hero? 

Murphy.  When I first joined derby Murphy caught my eye. She has always been someone I like to watch do all the things.  She was the first skater to leave Niagara and join Queen City in Buffalo.  She now plays for the All Star Lake Effect Furies who are ranked 27th out of 320 teams in the world. She is also the coach of QCRG Jr. Roller Girls.  She still come back as a guest trainer now and then and has taught me a few tricks that have made accomplishing a skill much easier.  

Most memorable derby moment? 

When I tried out and made the travel team.  I was so excited!  I am so proud to be the oldest person in the league and have the skills to keep up with the best, as well as the youngest.  Another memorable moment is when Mac Attack surprised me after practice one day.  He was waiting for me outside the dressing room and when I came out he said, “Can I talk to you for a minute?”  He is a referee and I thought he was going to give me some advice, but instead he showed me a decal he made for my helmet and asked me if I liked it!  This made me feel really special and  I wear it proudly.

Pre-bout rituals?  I watch derby bout videos.  You can learn a lot by watching.  I get excited watching badass jammers and try to do some of the things I see them do to get through the pack.  I also watch what  the blockers are doing, but honestly…I mostly watch the jammers.  Librawlian, aka Brawl who also plays with the Furies in Buffalo is my favorite jammer to watch. Actually,  all the Furies jammers are amazing, but I am always in awe of Brawl.

What is your athletic background?  I’ve played sports my whole life.  I played travel soccer, spent lots of time lifting in the gym, and I run half marathons in the spring and summer.

Advice to someone interested in playing? 

Do it!  I signed up for freshmeat when I was 50.  If you are someone who used to love roller skating at the roller rink back in the day, and would like to play derby, but think you are too old…WRONG!  You are not too old.  My goal is to inspire people my age to get out and enjoy this sport as much as I do.  I’m proud to say that at 53, I am the oldest person in the league.  Actually, you don’t need any skating experience,  and it is for people of all ages and abilities.  You learn all the skills required in training before skating with a team.  It’s a real sisterhood and I guarantee you will love it!  Come out and meet some cool people, play an amazing sport, and give back to the community.  It’s a win, win.

Who do you want to give a SHOUT OUT to? 

So grateful for all the referees, non-skating officials, and volunteers.  Thank you so much for your time and commitment !!! We would not be able to play this amazing sport without you.  You are all appreciated by every skater in the league.

Likes/dislikes? Likes…..I’m an adrenaline junkie. So anything that scares and excites me at the same time. (Which is just one of the reasons I love derby) sunshine, running,  chicken wings, derby butts,  warm weather, roller blading,  palm trees, traveling, wine, surrounding myself with positive, supportive, inspiring people, the sound and smell of the ocean, cold beer,  roller skating, all kinds of music, animals.  Especially my little dog Tux.    

Things I dislike….negativity, birds flying close to my personal space, Brussels sprouts, gossip, bullying.

Derby wife?  Yes, my derby wife is  Femme-icidal Intent.